I spent the last two weeks in Zimbabwe, living life with American college students and Zimbabwean student leaders. Each year the local VisionTrust staff put on a discipleship camp for the leaders and graciously allow us to attend. During camp we gathered on benches under a white tent to listen to messages of love and worship the God that brought us all together.
During worship the Zimbabweans would dance and kick up dust. It flew into the air and floated like smoke around the tent's three suspended light bulbs.
One night after the message they pulled the Americans into the open space under the tent to teach us how to dance. They sang and played the keyboard as they brought the dust once more. I looked around at my team, dispersed among the Africans—bobbing heads in the midst of waving hand, their faces evidence of the Kingdom at work. Every one of them was smiling and laughing, uninhibited by any feeling of insecurity or awkwardness, completely in the moment—no one grasping for cameras as pictures would fail to do the moment justice.
It felt like freedom.
The Americans' breathing grew heavy and they escaped outside the heat and dust of the tent with their new friends to continue dancing under the stars.
We shuffled home in the dark and as I took off my shoes, still dusted with joy from the brown earth, I was reminded that the Kingdom of God is active and moving everywhere. The freedom my team felt that night is always available, but often forgotten. Why is it that I only take note when I'm overseas?
Overseas I seek out the Kingdom—I look for God working in everything. But at home, I let insecurity and busyness stop me from recognizing the true value of the Kingdom of God. These shortfalls bury my joy and hinder me from enjoying the dance.
Over the week this passage rang steady in my ears, "The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field." -Matthew 13:44
In his joy he sold all that he had because he recognized the Kingdom's worth. I am praying that recognition would overtake me—that the dust would follow me home—reminding me every day to seek the Kingdom.
(PS- You can see photos from my trip by clicking here.)